On Monday, January 21st, Taylor Energy Company deployed response aircraft and vessels to investigate an unverified report of daily oil releases from the MC-20 site in the Gulf of Mexico. That new report relied on deeply-flawed analysis that exaggerated the volume of oil at the site to be thousands of times larger than all prior reports.
To investigate the unverified claim, and out of an abundance of caution, Taylor Energy voluntarily deployed planes and cleanup vessels to observe, quantify, and collect any oil that could be recovered at MC-20. The cleanup experts found only a 10.2 gallon sheen, not ten thousand gallons as alleged in the flawed report. In fact, the reality at the site was nothing remotely approaching a 250-to-700-barrel per day release of oil at the site. Rather, consistent with the longstanding record of observed volume estimates, there was a cumulative volume of a small fraction of one barrel – one-fourth of one barrel – and no oil was capable of collection. The sheen was too thin.